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Strict action against road blockades: DMP

UNB . Dhaka
11 Jul 2024 15:52:52 | Update: 11 Jul 2024 17:38:35
Strict action against road blockades: DMP
- Courtesy Photo

Strict action will be taken against individuals who block roads in the name of the “Blockade,” Additional Police Commissioner (Crime and Ops) Dr Mahid Uddin warned Thursday.

Addressing a press conference at the Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) Media Center, he emphasised that causing public suffering through road blockades is a punishable offense under existing laws.

Despite the Supreme Court's Appellate Division issuing a status quo on the High Court's judgment regarding the quota system in government jobs, anti-quota protesters are continuing the “Bangla Blockade” across the country.

They demand the cancellation of the quota system and the reinstatement of the 2018 circular. Protesters plan to take to the streets again at 3:30 pm on Thursday.

The additional police commissioner elaborated, “Wednesday, the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court upheld the 2018 circular with a four-week suspension order. As a result, the 2018 circular remains in effect during this period. Therefore, there is no justification for causing public hardship through protests.”

He appealed to the students, saying, “We have love and sympathy for the students, but we must respect the existing laws and the decisions of our highest court. As educated individuals, I urge the students not to organise any programmes that cause public suffering. The 2018 circular is still in effect.”

The DMP official added, “Yesterday, protesters occupied 21 locations. We managed the situation professionally, ensuring the free movement of Dhaka residents. Since the court has settled the matter, we hope there will be no further public disruptions.

“A movement should have a logical basis. Currently, the Apex Court's order is in favour of the protesters. If there is no logic in the movement, it should not continue. We request the students to cease these programmes. It will benefit everyone, including the city residents and the respect for our judicial system,” he said.

“If the roads are blocked, then you're impeding the freedom of movement, according to our constitution. We hope the protesters will not commit this offense. In the past ten days, the police have acted professionally, maintaining respect for the students. We believe the students will reciprocate this respect towards the law, the city residents, and the police,” the DMP official said.

When asked if the police would take action if the protests continued, he said, “Our professional approach has been to manage these situations calmly, and we aim to continue this.

“We hope the protesters will understand their position, especially given the court's order. Since the 2018 circular is in effect, there is no logical basis for the protests.”